MEN understand United are still in the market for a ready-made winger, center-back, right-back and defensive midfielder, but there is an expectation that there will be no revenue in the January window.
United intend to set themselves on their list of summer goals by the New Year and will only move to an agreed upon goal if they become available next month.
Senior sources at United have described the January market as “the fool’s gold” and “driven by the desperation of the buyer more than the motivation of the seller.”
An agency source told MEN that the majority of Premier League clubs expect an incident-free winter window as they continue to suffer side effects from the coronavirus pandemic.
Senior United officials believe they are on track to strengthen the squad over the next two windows after the pandemic affected their market movement this summer.
United have spotted Brighton center-back Ben White and remain a fan of valiant Real Madrid Raphael Varane and RB Leipzig defender Dayot Upamecano.
An approach for a top center-back next year could easily be justified as United want to sell Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo, while Eric Bailly’s future is also uncertain as he is out of contract in 2022.
Childhood fan Kieran Trippier is said to be enjoying a move to United as the final 18 months of his contract with Atletico Madrid approach. Trippier, born in Bury, is 30 but has started in all six England internationals so far this season and United do not have a credible contender for Aaron Wan-Bissaka.
United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is evaluating Declan Rice, who is another England regular and has taken on the captain position at West Ham this season.
Paul Pogba’s agent Mino Raiola has reneged on his determination to move Pogba in January and is now planning a summer departure, with the Frenchman still having a year on his contract.
“I should have said summer,” Raiola said at the Golden Boy Awards. “It’s difficult for the great players to move in January. We will see what happens this summer. The world has changed a lot. ”
In the winter window last season, United considered loaning out a Spanish midfielder amid interest in Atletico Madrid’s Marcos Llorente until they achieve a breakthrough with Sporting Lisbon for Bruno Fernandes.
United’s failure to reward Jadon Sancho this summer then led the club to explore deals for Barcelona striker Ousmane Dembele and Watford’s Ismaila Sarr before making deals for teenagers Facundo Pellistri and Amad Diallo.
Diallo, 18, is expected to team up with United in January, provided the club can secure a work permit for the Ivorian-born winger, and Pellistri, also 18, could be included in the squad premiere in the new year.
Odion Ighalo will return to Shanghai Shenhua once his one-year loan with United expires at the end of January and United sources have said that by the time of Edinson Cavani’s arrival on the deadline day in October, it is for them. would avoid the need to replace Ighalo in January.
Solskjaer has intense competition in goals between David de Gea and Dean Henderson, deadline signing Alex Telles is in contention with Luke Shaw and United have six international midfielders to choose from.
Cavani replaced Anthony Martial as United center-forward in his three starts and Solskjaer can call on Martial or Marcus Rashford on the left flank amid mistrust of Daniel James’ first signing, limited to three Premier League starts this quarter.
United have prioritized spending in January, but there is an acceptance that some senior players will be hard to sell due to their modest status.
Sergio Romero and Marcos Rojo are set to enter the last six months of their contract and Romero, 33, has been excluded from the Premier League and Champions League sides, while Rojo has been excluded from the latter.
United have one-year extensions available on the Rojo and Romero deals but Rojo, 30, hasn’t played for the club in over a year and Romero wanted to leave this summer.
Phil Jones, 28, last appeared for United in January and has been sidelined with injury since June, but is under contract with the club until 2023.
United have offered Timothy Fosu-Mensah a new contract but the 22-year-old right-back is considering his future.